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Power centers in the corridors of power, Extra Con
One of the morning talk shows mentioned of some offical limo driver from US State Dept being dispatched to attend the Arafat funeral <!--emo&Rolleyes--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/rolleyes.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='rolleyes.gif' /><!--endemo-->

Relax Mudy, Sonia and Natwar will have good company <!--emo&Wink--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/wink.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='wink.gif' /><!--endemo--> BTW, first phoren trip for madam <!--emo&:o--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/ohmy.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='ohmy.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Presidential pique

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--> Because of the severe cash crunch in AIR, one of the new economy measures is that foreign correspondents may not travel without the express permission of the head office. Thus when President Abdul Kalam visited the UAE to condole the death of UAE President Sheikh Sayed bin Sultan al Nahayan, the AIR correspondent stationed in Dubai could not travel the 150 km from Dubai to Abu Dhabi to report live on the President’s visit. Doordarshan did not even bother to carry the news of the President’s visit.

On the other hand, when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh left for the EU a few days later, two AIR correspondents accompanied him as did a DD crew. The President’s Office is reportedly miffed with such stepmotherly treatment. An additional grouse is that neither the Prime Minister nor Sonia Gandhi attended the President’s Id party. Was it a mere coincidence that President Kalam did not show up for the samadhi prayers on Pandit Nehru’s birth anniversary, as is customary?
<b>Mukesh calls on Sonia, FM</b>
New Delhi
Mukesh Ambani met Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Saturday. The brief meeting was termed as a "courtesy call" by 10, Janpath. Mukesh Ambani later met Finance Minister P Chidambaram at his residence.
CBI: Congress Bureau of Investigation!
(Feature, www.samachar.com 8th December 2004)

Source: www.samachar.com
Date: 8th December2004

It is a pity the lotus-eaters of the NDA did not pursue corruption cases against senior Congressmen when they were in power. <b>From that known briber-taker in the Bofors scam, who now sits pretty in his home in Italy certain that the compatriot, who now controls the UPA Government, </b>would have the tawdry investigations buried once for all, to the <b>Satish Sharmas and Sukh Rams and Buta Singhs, all can sleep in peace now that the natural party of corruption and criminality in public life is back in power in New Delhi. </b>

The Vajpayee Government’s <b>misplaced generosity </b>towards the corrupt and the criminals in the then main opposition party did not earn it any IOUs. On the contrary, the NDA leaders were criticised for being weak and vacillating on the question of rooting out political corruption.<b> That Congressmen as a tribe were brazen and ungrateful ought to have been clear to the NDA leaders soon after they found themselves voted out of power.</b> A virtual witch-hunt was begun to harass and embarrass senior BJP leaders and their allies once the Congress Party returned to power on the shoulders of the Communists and other smaller groups.

Take, for example, the inquiry ordered by the Urban Welfare Ministry into the allotment of land in the national capital to various organisations associated with the former ruling party. Garbled stories were fed to the hungry media as to how plum pieces of real estate costing tens of crores of rupees were virtually gifted away free to the BJP-friendly persons.

If the Congressmen had paused to ponder their action they would have realised that, at worst, the BJP leaders had only aped them in helping themselves to subsidised land. After all, in a city where huge chunks of some of the priciest land in the country had been allocated to the Nehru-Gandhi family memorial industry for free, and where even the two Communist parties boasted of multistoried office complexes built on scandalously cheap government land, the BJP and its various affiliates had reason to make up for the lost opportunity when they got into power.

It is remarkable that the BJP did not have an office of its own, its headquarters having been housed in a government bungalow while even the preachy CPI (M) boasted of a grand structure built on cheap government land. So if they allocated land to themselves it was only a case of evening out the score, though they could never get land abutting Rajpath, which was reserved for the Family exclusively.

But the Congress Party seemed hell-bent on vendetta so that it can at least tar the main opposition party with the same black brush with which it had long been tarred for its various acts of omission and commission. <b>The confrontationist approach was clear when it scrapped the Phukan Commission of inquiry into the Tehelka scam </b>only a few weeks before it was to submit its final report. This was done to accommodate the concerns of the people behind the portal who feared that their true selves might be opened for public scrutiny if Justice Phukan was allowed to proceed any further.

Instead, the CBI was ordered to go after those whom the controversial sting operators had trapped in their wicked web. Most dutifully, the <b>CBI has registered criminal cases against ten persons, including the former BJP President, Bangaru Laxman, and former Samta Party chief, Jaya Jaitley</b>. Laxman was caught on camera while a Tehelka operative forced Rs one lakh on him as part of their political agenda to destabilise the NDA Government.

Jaitley did not take any money, not even a single rupee, though like any other politician in her position when approached to intervene in a case where allegedly a wrong was done to the petitioner she promised to speak to the minister concerned since he belonged to her party. But the Tehelka script demanded that George Fernandes be embarrassed at all costs, so one of its operatives forced a few bundles of currency notes on a visitor and secretly filmed the whole operation.Thank god they did not offer wine and women to the political leaders though this was one of the means adopted by the self-proclaimed crusaders to trap their pre-determined targets.

A couple of days prior to the slapping of the cases against Laxman and Jaitley, another supposedly independent agency, the Securities and Appellate Tribunal (SAT), overturned a SEBI order banning Shankar Sharma’s First Global from participating in the stock market operations. The timing of the order was significant. And suggested that regardless of the law the agencies like the CBI and SAT are far from independent, and only too willing to do their political masters’ bidding. That way lies further descent into corruption and criminality. The gentleman Prime Minister seems unable or unwilling to stop the flagrant misuse of independent agencies for purely partisan political ends.

Send in your comments on this article to samachareditor@sify.com
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->All virtues of great men are manifest in Ms Sonia Gandhi. She is an asset not just to Congress or India but the entire humanity..

- Home Minister Shivraj Patil<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

<!--emo&:flush--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/Flush.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='Flush.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<b>Sans Sonia </b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The thing is, Sonia Gandhi has outlived her usefulness as Congress president. Starting from the Maharashtra polls, her vote-getting capacity is being seriously questioned, and in her Bihar campaign areas in these polls, Congress candidates have lost their deposit. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd--> <!--emo&Big Grin--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/biggrin.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='biggrin.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->In both the running of the Congress and the running of the UPA government by remote control, Sonia has failed. Because she has not even rudimentary understanding of politics or government, she goes by tendered advises, which are inevitably partisan, and she has blundered again and again in these past months. The Congress party and UPA needs one single person who understands and appreciates good politics and good government, can judge right from wrong, won’t surrender principles for expediency easily, and that person maybe Manmohan Singh, but it is certainly not Sonia Gandhi. One thing going for her before was mass appeal, but even that has eroded. Before she becomes a liability for the Congress, <b>Sonia Gandhi must renounce politics, fully and finally</b>. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd--> <!--emo&:cool--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/specool.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='specool.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<b>Jaswant attacks UPA 'centres of power'</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->BJP leader said it was strange that some of the top UPA leaders, including the Prime Minister, did not know what was happening in Goa, Jharkhand or for that matter in Bihar.<b> "Separation of the centre of political authority from the seat of political executive" will take a toll on governance and even the economy, he remarked</b>.

Even as PM Manmohan Singh sat listening to his speech, Jaswant Singh commented: <b>"Where there is competence, there is no authority." The PM, he said, was a "very competent man" and then hinting at Sonia Gandhi added: "Where there is political authority there is no competence</b>" <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
The stillness at PM House
From the above article linked by bgravi:
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->An acquaintance of Dr Manmohan Singh once asked me: “Why do you think there are so many guards around Race Course Road?” I mumbled something about security, slightly annoyed over the flippancy of the question. “Wrong!” came the triumphant response, “They are there to keep the poor man from running away!”
<!--emo&:roll--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/ROTFL.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='ROTFL.gif' /><!--endemo--> <!--emo&:roll--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/ROTFL.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='ROTFL.gif' /><!--endemo-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Prez had sought file on Sonia's citizenship </b>
PTI/ New Delhi
President APJ Abdul Kalam had in April last year summoned the file of a PIL challenging his predecessor KR Narayanan's decision to invite Congress chief Sonia Gandhi for consultations on Government formation in 1998, the petitioner's counsel said in the Delhi High Court on Wednesday.

During the hearing on Rashtriya Mukti Morcha's (RMM) petition against Narayanan's decision to invite a naturalised citizen to hold a constitutional post, senior counsel PN Lekhi said President Kalam had summoned the court file in April last year.

The court, however, did not make any comment on Lekhi's statement which was made in the context of the delay in deciding the case pending since 1999.

Terming it as an issue of utmost importance, Lekhi urged the court to fix any working Saturday to exclusively hear the PIL.

"Allowing a person of foreign origin to run the government or a political party would be subversion of the Constitution," he submitted.

The recognition of a political party, headed by a person of foreign origin, can be cancelled under the Election (Symbols) Order, 1968, the senior counsel said.

The court fixed July 23, a Saturday, for exclusively hearing the matter.

In its petition filed in 1999, RMM had urged the court to declare that no person, who is not a citizen of India within the meaning of Article 5 of the Constitution, has the right to be elected or appointed to any public office.

RMM had also sought derecognition of all such political parties whose office bearers were not citizen within the meaning of Article 5 of the Constitution
<b>Fernandes alleges personal vendetta; attacks Sonia</b>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Under attack over arms procurements during the Kargil conflict and the Denel deal, former Defence Minister George Fernandes on Friday charged the Congress and the Nehru-Gandhi dynasty with "personal vendetta" for his "anti-Congressism".<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd--><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The NDA Convener alleged that it was a "conspiracy to demoralise the armed forces" whether it was Kargil purchases, the Tehelka expose or the coffin issue.

Maintaining it was not for the first time in his 56 years of public life that he has been a victim of <b>"Congress' vendetta", </b>he told a BJP Intellectual Cell meeting, <b>"I haven't studied why the Congress does it but I am a hardcore opponent of that party... I have suffered the worst. If they think they can browbeat me by harassing me, they are mistaken".</b>

<b>"People who have no love for this country are behind the conspiracy to demoralise the forces. I will not allow this country to be looted. I have only one country. Others may have other countries", </b>he said in an apparent reference to the Congress president's foreign origin.

Fernandes said though he was a fan of late Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru during his initial years, <b>he will remain "angry till death" for Nehru's stand that there was no option to partition</b>.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Sonia's appointment</b>
It is said that Mother Teresa did much for the orphan children in Calcutta. Teresa in capital loved a child(or a man) very much. His name is Navin Chawla. Chawla wrote the biography of Mother Teresa and Sonia Gandhi appointed him the chairman of Delhi Electricity Board. Chawla wrote one more book on Mother Teresa and Sonia Gandhi appointed him as a Secretary in the Information and Broadcasting Ministry. She wished to appoint him as a Secretary in the Home Ministry, but Manmohan showed his straightforwardness and Chawla had to satisfy on Information and Broadcasting Ministry.

We do not know if he wrote one more book on Mother Teresa, but Chawla was suddenly appointed as an Election Commissioner. It is understood that Chawla has started writing one more book and its title is "My mother". But who is My Mother? The one who gave him birth, Mother Teresa or Soniaji? Perhaps, the mystery will be solved when he will get next promotion. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
<b>Family trouble </b> -<i>The worst is not over for the Congress party. It is beginning.</i>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->So what do the children contribute to this whole decision-making process, where frankly no decisions are taking, nothing that resounds at any rate? More to the point, what can these children contribute, even though they may wish well? Do they have the collective experience of the cabinet, or even of the top three or four ministers? The answer is obvious.

And while it is good that somebody is going after the coterie with a big stick, what is to prevent another coterie from coming up, this one centred around George? After all, not long ago, George was the principal gatekeeper to the Gandhi household, a responsibility that has since fallen on the coterie. Where is this headed? Where is the Congress party headed with all these internal battles and score settling and leg-pulling? How can so much turn on one individual, who still does not have the natural gifts of Mrs Indira Gandhi to run the party? How can the UPA-led Congress government go on when, at bottom, Sonia Gandhi trusts her children over the seniors for the most sensitive decisions, decisions they are totally inexperienced, and perhaps incompetent, to take?

The surprise is that nobody is raising these issues. As a party in government, the affairs of the Congress are no longer internal affairs. If the party is undemocratic, controlled by one family, then this will reflect on the government, and it has, for the past one year. Without the active proclamation of Emergency, an Emergency-like situation is beginning to visit the country. Not a day passes when the UPA is not cutting the political space of the Opposition, and within the UPA, or rather the Congress, it is becoming more and more, more openly than ever before, a one-family show.

This is neither good for the family, and no one dare tell this to the family, and it is certainly not good for the Congress. The country, all said and done, can take care of itself, and this should warn the main ruling party, its main ruling family, not to carry things to an extreme. <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Looks like V.George is back.
In place of PM, Sonia and her kids will decide Ministers fate.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->In place of PM, Sonia and her kids will decide Ministers fate. 
Serves them right. There are those whose very existence in the cabinet and GoI or the Congress party is dependent on mercy of the Gandhi family and some baksheesh thrown by the inner coterie of first family. So if they loose their spot because of Gandhi's why should they complain. <!--emo&:beer--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/cheers.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='cheers.gif' /><!--endemo-->

When were these gentle folks last elected by a common man - Manmohan Singh (Prime Minister), Pranab M (Defense Minister), Natwar Singh (Minister of External Affairs), Shivraj Patil (Home Minister), HR Bharadwaj (Minister of Law)?
Next 30 days will be very interesting to watch tap dance and tantrums.

Where they put country callled "INDIA" in equation?
Articles —
Dr. J. K. Bajaj [Review of P. N. Dhar, Indira Gandhi, the ‘Emergency’ and Indian Democracy, Oxford, New Delhi 2000]

Srimati Indira Gandhi presided over the Indian State from 1966-1977. This was a crucial decade for India. The first twenty years following Independence were a period of recuperation. Much effort had to be spent on restoring to some state of health and vigour the physical and social environment that had been devastated by long centuries of foreign rule. Indira Gandhi arrived on the scene when the nation was in a position to make a concerted drive towards greater prosperity and power. Other countries of the world that achieved Independence along with us began to make substantial strides around this time; the foundations of the great prosperity and power that we see in China and the Southeast Asian nations today were in fact laid during the sixties and seventies.

India under Indira Gandhi did take some major, though tentative, steps. In the economic field, the productivity and market availability of food-grains was sought to be improved through the so-called “green revolution”, and through nationalisation of banking, an effort was made to mobilise large-scale funds for state-sponsored industrial growth. In the political field, the creation of Bangladesh with Indian military assistance established India as a power to reckon with, at least in the South Asian region. The testing of a nuclear device at Pokharan in May 1974 further underlined the Indian surge towards power; and the merger of Sikkim in September the same year proved to the world the Indian willingness to assert herself in order to protect her vital strategic interests.
NCP unhappy with Congress

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->NCP unhappy with Congress

NCP leaders are extremely unhappy with the Congress establishment for painting civil aviation minister Praful Patel in a bad light. What baffled them most was the ruckus created by the Congress leaders over the Boeing aircraft purchase deal. The NCP is peeved that the letter seeking a probe into the proposed Boeing deal was signed by none other than the staunch Sonia Gandhi loyalist Narain Swami, chief whip of the Congress Parliamentary Party in the Rajya Sabha. It was pointed out by NCP leaders that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was kept in the loop throughout. So much so that US President George Bush personally spoke to Manmohan Singh on the Boeing purchases in April last over telephone. He specifically raised the issue to buttress India-US relations. Patel was reportedly present in the back room of the PMO when the call came.

Among the several items on the agenda during the telephonic talk, Boeing was one. <b>Congress leaders now say that Patel may have kept Manmohan Singh in the loop but not the UPA chairperson or the Congress. Therefore, the NCP cannot take the Congress for granted.</b> <!--emo&Rolleyes--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/rolleyes.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='rolleyes.gif' /><!--endemo--> The deal is yet to be cleared by the Union Cabinet.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Curious transfer may delay Lalu's nemesis
Pioneer News Service / Patna / New Delhi
<b>All hopes of an early verdict in the disproportionate asset case against Railway Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav and his wife Rabri Devi, were dashed on Monday following the transfer of designated CBI judge (Patna) Yogendra Prasad to Munger as District Judge.</b>
Following his transfer, Mr Prasad on Monday adjourned till June 21 the final hearing of the DA case. Yogendra Prasad is the fourth designated CBI judge dealing with the fodder scam and related cases to be transferred midway through the cases.

Special public prosecutor (CBI) LR Ansari said the trial in the case charging Mr Prasad with having accumulated wealth worth over Rs 46 lakh disproportionate to his known sources of income when he was Bihar chief minister between 1990 and 1997, was "in its final stage".

Ms Rabri Devi is a co-accused in the case, an offshoot the Rs 950 crore fodder scam.

Incidentally, Supreme Court Justice SN Variava, had recently made the shocking revelation that he was contacted by "someone in the (Patna) High Court", who indirectly sought to know if "the (trial court) judge could be changed". Mr Variava had later clarified his statement.

Justice Variava was hearing a petition filed by BJP Member of Parliament Sushil Kumar Modi and JD(U) Member of Parliament Rajiv Ranjan Singh 'Lalan' seeking cancellation of Mr Prasad's bail alleging that he had been interfering with the investigation and trial.

Appearing for the petitioner, senior advocate Mukul Rohtagi had told the court that there was a move by the government to replace the special judge trying the DA and fodder scam cases.Opposing this, Solicitor General GE Vahanvati had said the government could not transfer a trial court judge as it was a matter exclusively in the jurisdiction of the High Court at Patna.

When Mr Rohtagi persisted with the apprehension, the SC bench said, "Bring it to our notice when such a transfer takes place. We will deal with it then."

<b>Reacting to Mr Yogendra Prasad's transfer, petitioner Rajiv Ranjan Singh told The Pioneer that his "apprehensions had come true". Mr Singh said the transfer would delay the trail by at least six months because arguments will have to take place again.</b>

"We had pleaded in the court for expeditious hearing of the DA case. We had also raised apprehension that the designated CBI judge could be shifted to delay the trial. I don't want to say anything more at this stage, but we will surely approach the Supreme Court on this issue," he said.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

UPA transfered judge again. <!--emo&:thumbdown--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/thumbsdownsmileyanim.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='thumbsdownsmileyanim.gif' /><!--endemo-->
Santa SOnia mother of all corruption.
Cong picks Priya to succeed Sunil Dutt
<b>Sonia slams Modi govt over Guj flood relief</b>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Vadodara/ahmedabad, July 4: On a day-long tour of flood-hit Gujarat, Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Monday said there were complaints about inadequate relief and asked the state government to pay cash doles for 15 days and speed up rehabilitation in affected areas.

“I have been receiving complaints that cash doles are not being given. The state government should ensure that money reaches the people,” Gandhi said as she undertook a whirlwind tour of Vadodara, the worst hit in the recent rain-induced floods.

Visiting relief camps and slum areas along the swollen Vishwamitri river, the UPA chairperson stopped at several places to interact with the affected people.

A major portion of the rehabilitation package would be spent on rebuilding houses of slum dwellers that were washed way in the floods, she said.
Gandhi and Defence Minister Pranab Mukherjee jointly undertook an aerial survey of worst-hit Vadodara, Anand, Kheda and Ahmedabad districts to have a first-hand account of the flood situation in the state.

Expressing his dissatisfaction with relief and rehabilitation work in the state, he said in Ahmedabad that “help has not reached many parts of the state. Even the assessment of damage is not done as several areas are still cut-off.”
Who the hell she is? What is her authority to use central resources and ask state to pay 15 days dole? <!--emo&:thumbdown--><img src='style_emoticons/<#EMO_DIR#>/thumbsdownsmileyanim.gif' border='0' style='vertical-align:middle' alt='thumbsdownsmileyanim.gif' /><!--endemo-->

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